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Companies Act 1989 Definition & Overview

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What is the Companies Act 1989?

The Companies Act 1989 is the governing legislation for amendments made to UK company law concerning company accounts, fair trading, and investigation procedures. The legislation improves existing company law by introducing new measures concerning company auditor eligibility, registration of company charges and more.

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An overview of the Companies Act 1989

The Companies Act 1989 introduced a number of changes and amendments to several Acts of Parliament concerning UK company law, including the Companies Act 1985, the Company Securities Act 1985, the Financial Services Act 1986, the Fair Trading Act 1973, the Policyholders Protection Act 1975, and the Company Directors Disqualification Act 1986. Like the previous Companies Act 1985 this one was also designed to consolidate existing legislation and it incorporated some directives already found in the European Union.

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Here are a few ways this act amended and improved upon previous enactments:

  • Made changes to laws governing company accounts
     
  • Introduced new provisions regarding company auditor eligibility

  • Amended laws set forth in the Companies Act 1985, particularly with respect to ‘powers to obtain information’ and investigation procedures

  • Conferred new powers exercisable to provide assistance to regulatory authorities  overseas
     
  • Introduced new provisions regarding the registration of company charges

  •  Changed the applicability of the laws set out in Section 62 of the Financial Services Act 1986, ushering in a new regulatory system designed to be simpler yet more flexible.
     
  •  Made amendments to Part V of the Fair Trading Act 1973

  •  Introduced provisions to safeguard some aspects of operation in certain financial markets

  • Enabled provision to be made for the transfer and recording of title to securities without the need for a written instrument
     
  • Amended laws relating to building societies

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